The fifth grade students at Good Counsel Academy Elementary, a private, Catholic school in Valhalla, NY, held a bake sale to benefit Pandas International. In organizing and participating in the bake sale, students built on their character development program which emphasizes the importance of caring for the Earth and all living things as an instrumental part of good citizenship. The students set up the bake sale on Thursday, November 10, 2016 and sold their goods during lunch, recess, and a Parent School Organization meeting that evening. The support of the GCAE community resulted in the students generating a total of $304.50. Thank you to the wonderful students for your very generous donation and for helping to care for our earth!
Pan Pan was a Hero Father and Grandfather, siring over 30 cubs and related to more than 130 pandas. While his contributions are many in terms of helping increase the panda population, Pan Pan also helped lead the way to support Chinese research efforts to study geriatric pandas and how best to care for them. Pan Pan’s legacy will live on through his many offspring and also through his contributions to Giant Panda conservation. I remember the first time I heard of the legendary Pan Pan and was so honored to have gotten to spend time with him as well as adopt him out of respect for his “life’s work”. This past July, when Pan Pan turned 31 years old, Suzanne Braden, Director of Pandas International, and I made Pan Pan a special birthday cake and were able to spend a few precious minutes with him. He was living a quiet, comfortable life in the geriatric wing of the Dujiangyan Giant Panda Base where he was given the very best of care. He fought a brave battle against cancer but ultimately it won. While all Giant Pandas are very special, Pan Pan will always hold a special place in my heart. The first time I met him, I was in awe but felt a deep sense of honor, respect and pride. Here was the Hero Father/Grandfather and legend right in front of me - the Father and Grandfather to so many of our beloved pandas, and especially to Tai Shan, my “sweetest of hearts”. After our first meeting, I visited him a few more times during follow-on trips to China, and each time he seemed to me to be the “Consummate Gentleman”, much like Tai’s nickname is the “Courteous Gentleman”. As I stood there with him, I wished I could talk to Pan Pan and ask him about his life as a Giant Panda. He seemed so wise but also playful and sometimes just a little goofy (similar to Tian, Tai and Bei Bei, just to name a few). And I like to think that, when he and Tai Shan [...]
Alicia decided to do Pennies-for-Pandas in lieu of gifts for her 9th birthday. She raised $75 for pandas! They also played a panda trivia game to educate her friends about pandas. Thank you to Alicia for helping the Giant Pandas and for educating others!
Peide School, an international school located in Beijing, China chose Pandas International in their world citizenship class to protect the earth as well as the species. They set up a bake sale event, so every adult related to the school, such as teachers, staff and parents bought those students' home-made food and drinks and generated about $550 dollars. Thank you to the amazing primary school students at Peide school for making a difference in the lives of the Giant Pandas.
These wonderful girls saw that it was National Teddy Bear Day on September 9th and decided to celebrate it at their local library. They decided to use the National Teddy Bear Day to help the Giant Pandas. Six un-stuffed panda teddy bears were ordered for the celebration. Upon arrival the girls stuffed the panda bears, decorated their shirts, and filled out their teddy bear birth certificates. They sold 3 to their local library, 1 to their school library, 1 to their local pharmacy, and 1 to their local used bookstore just in time for them to celebrate National Teddy Bear Day. They raised $76.00 to help save the pandas! The girls really loved their fundraiser project and put a lot of time and effort into it. They will never forget this and all the info they learned studying about giant pandas. Thank you to Katelyn, Chloe, and Maria for your hard work and for helping to make a difference.
A group of 60 Giant Panda supporters held their annual Giant Panda Birthday party this year on August 20th, 2016 at Lillie’s Restaurant in Washington, D. C. As a result of their efforts, they raised over $5,000 by holding a live auction, a silent auction, raffle and sale of Bao Bao and Bei Bei medallions (which are on sale in the Pandas International On-Line Store as well). The money will be used to support the CCRCGP efforts to increase Giant Panda enrichment. And this year, the group was honored to have a very special attendee - distinguished guest Dr. Li DeShang who is the Deputy Director and Head Veterinarian at the CCRCGP. Once again this year, the group created and signed a Special Giant Panda Birthday Banner that includes photos of all the Birthday Pandas. Those who attended the party signed the banner with special birthday wishes for our beloved bears. Suzanne Braden will take the banner to China in October and present it to the keepers at the Dujiangyan Giant Panda Base where Pan Pan and Tai Shan live. Pandas International would like to thank each of the 60 people who participated in this year’s Giant Panda Birthday and for raising over $5,000.00
When eleven-year-old Elizabeth was given a school project to educate themselves on a topic of their choice, she knew she wanted to choose pandas. It was through her research that she found Pandas International and knew she wanted to help. She enlisted her mom to create a Facebook event, a silent auction with all proceeds going to Pandas International. She auctioned off a number of panda themed items, and shared panda facts as well. She was thrilled when she was able to send money to Pandas International! Thank you Elizabeth for your dedication to the Pandas.
Our son Aaron chose the Giant Panda for his first grade animal research project. We fell in love while watching videos of pandas playing and decided we needed to see them in real life. We visited the San Diego Zoo for spring break. While in town, we saw a group of tourists wearing Pandas International pins and t-shirts. We researched your foundation when we came home from California. Aaron decided that the pandas needed help more than he needed toys, so he asked for friends to bring donations instead of presents to his 7th birthday Star Wars party. Aaron made his own decorations for the collection basket - the panda is holding a light saber not bamboo! He collected $510 at the party and added another $26.50 from his own piggy bank. We are so proud of our friends, neighbors, and son! We look forward to hosting another party fundraiser next June! Thank you to Aaron, his family and all of their wonderful friends for helping to save the Giant Pandas. We are very grateful for your generous support.
Classroom 11 chose to help Pandas International as the classroom service learning "Do Good" project. Students baked cookies, muffins, cupcakes, rice crispy treats, and brownies to help support the bake sale. We also had students make homemade soaps, various jewelry (bracelets and earrings), bookmarks, and magnets to share their artistic talents and donate to the gift shop. Even the rain couldn’t stop us! Due to the inclement weather, we had to move our location to a indoor place last minute. We were worried that people wouldn’t find us, but we were packed in our classroom with so many customers. The students were working so hard to fulfill their responsibility as cashier, seller, and marketing promoter. We were proud to announce that Classroom 11 has raised $500 from our bake sale and gift shop to donate to Pandas International. Thank you classroom 11 for your hard work and very generous donation!
What could be better than doing my yearly A4ED event in the Ariel Sharon Green school? This Green Elementary School in Hod Hasharon, Israel, is a school dedicated to the environment and aims to educate its students on subjects such as sustainability, recycling and nature preservation. When Tsvia Hemo, the Green school's culture events coordinator, invited me for a school visit, I immediately offered her to turn this visit into an Authors for Earthday event. Tsvia, together with Merav Mazor, the school principal, loved the idea and we started planning the event. I decided to choose this year 5 organizations who support endangered species of wild animals. The 3rd graders started to research about the organizations and the animals more than a month before my visit. The animals they learned about were: gorillas, whales & dolphins, pandas, river otters and wild parrots. I thought the choice was going to be very hard. But when the time came to vote, I was surprised by the results. 82% of the students in 4 classes chose one organization, leaving 18% to be divided almost equally between the other four organizations. Can you guess what was their choice? So, the winner was: Pandas International!. The winning organization will receive a donation from me, 50% of my honorarium. The donation will be sent in the name of the Green school's students. I asked the students to share about how they reached their decision. The kids' answers were very interesting. Some of them told about personal experiences which helped them make their choice: A girl who was fascinated when she watched gorillas at the zoo; or a boy who went swimming with dolphins. Others pointed facts they learned during their research like the fact that there are less than 3,000 pandas left in the wild today. Other kids shared a bit less serious reasons for their choice, for example the irresistible cuteness of the pandas. But the last girl who spoke said something different. She said she chose the pandas, but could have easily chosen any other one of the five organizations, and she wished [...]